Our people

Frank Pötgens


  • Profession
    Tax partner, Professor of International and European Tax Law (VU University Amsterdam)
  • Expertise
  • Languages
    Dutch, English, German
  • Education
    Tax law at Tilburg University, Erasmus-program, University of Leuven, Fiscale Hogeschool Brussels and PhD at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam


Frank Pötgens is a tax lawyer and partner at De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek in Amsterdam. He focuses on the area of international and EU tax law.


His practice includes advising clients, which is a relatively small spin-off of De Brauw Blackstone Westbroek’s corporate practice. The remaining and major part of his activities comprises litigation in a broader sense, including providing expert opinions for tax proceedings and second opinions, and conducting proceedings in the Netherlands’ various tax courts. Frank regularly contributes to discussions on international tax law, and shares his views with the Dutch Ministry of Finance (e.g. on the 2010 tax treaty between the Netherlands and Japan, and the 2012 tax treaty between the Netherlands and Germany) and the Dutch parliament (hearing on the Dutch tax treaty policy and advising on the relationship between the Dutch Separated Private Assets regime and tax treaties).


Frank is a professor of International and European Tax Law at the Free University of Amsterdam (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam). Frank was awarded his PhD by Erasmus University Rotterdam for his (published) thesis on the tax aspects of cross-border employees and their remunerations in January 2007.


In December 2011, Frank was appointed as Deputy Justice of the Court of Appeal of ‘s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands.


In 2017 Frank became a member of the International Tax Group, a group of international tax experts, which celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2020.


Track record (litigation) – Frank has represented:

  • A portfolio company of a Private Equity Fund in its tax litigation regarding the deductibility of interest on various loans and shareholders loans (including a reversed convertible)
  • National Grid Indus BV in its EU court proceedings on the Dutch exit tax levied if a company moves its tax residence out of the Netherlands
  • A Dutch investment company in a dispute concerning an additional wage withholding tax assessment imposed on the company as a result of an excessive severance payment attributed to one of its former directors.
  • South African media group, in Dutch Supreme Court tax litigation (the ”Mauritius case” of 8 July 2016, BNB 2016/197) concerning limitation on interest deduction rules
  • CITO, the foundation that develops all exams in primary and secondary education in the Netherlands, in tax litigation before the Dutch Supreme Court. Proceedings to establish whether schools seconding teachers to CITO to develop exams are exempt from charging VAT to CITO
  • Loodswezen, the Dutch pilotage services, in Dutch Supreme Court tax litigation (case of 3 May 2013, BNB 2013/180) Proceedings before the Dutch Supreme Court concerning the duty to insure of aspiring registered pilots during their education/employment

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